All posts tagged Cancer

We Go Along

Published November 29, 2012 by rlmcdermott

we go along
as if nothing
is happening

as if the cancer
is a dream
and we can
wake up
and you’ll
be there
young and strong

I drew a picture
I wrote a poem
I peeled an orange
and listened to a song

these things I do
while you fight
to stay alive

the picture wasn’t beautiful
the poem didn’t rhyme
the orange was sour
and the song

there are no songs
that can comfort you
you are the one
who is fighting
for your life

a visit from a friend
tickets to a Giant’s game
your wife’s smile

these are the things
you do while I fight
to stay alive

two diseases
both cruel
mine is a secret
your’s belongs to the world

you long to be private
while I long to be seen

Visiting Aunt Mae

Published July 18, 2012 by rlmcdermott

Seen and
not heard,
we sat in
wooden chairs
our feet barely
touching the
floor, our hands
hidden underneath
our dresses–
trapping the
words in
the warm
of our thighs.

“Keep this
one for me,”
you would
say, passing
the word
along in
the moist
knot of
your fist;
and I would
take it, never
its mystery,
burying it deep–
a stigmata of dreams
that we shared
in the long Saturday
afternoons spent
sitting in the
dark parlor
of a woman
who would
die of cancer
at the age
of thirty-five.